Immediate Jeopardy Deficiencies Found at Second Dallas Hospital

Margaret Dick Tocknell, August 31, 2011

For the second time this month a Dallas hospital faces termination of its Medicare contract 'over deficiencies that potentially endanger patients.

Laura Irvine, the administrator at Methodist Dallas Medical Center, was notified of the 'the "immediate jeopardy" deficiencies in an August 26thletter from the Dallas office of the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

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The 515-bed hospital is part of the five-hospital Methodist Health System. It stands to lose up to $208 million in federal funding.

Earlier this month officials at Parkland Memorial Hospital received a similar letter. The hospital submitted the required corrective action plan which was accepted by state and federal officials. A second review  was underway on Tuesday.

On Tuesday night, Parkland's board announced that CEO Ron Anderson, MD, will "transition" to a different position when his contract ends in December.

The Methodist Dallas letter was sent after a review of a survey report written by the Texas Department of State Health Services. The report identified 10 broad areas of deficiencies, including medical screening, emergency services, and medical records. The specific violations will not be made available to the public until Methodist Dallas completes and releases it corrective action plan, which must be delivered to CMS by September 6.

David Wright, acting deputy regional administrator for CMS, said in an e-mail exchange that CMS is "constrained in what we can release at this point." He did acknowledge that the immediate jeopardy deficiency for Methodist Dallas is related to Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act or EMTALA violations.

Margaret Dick Tocknell Margaret Dick Tocknell is a reporter/editor with HealthLeaders Media.
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